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WOOD's private comments were after he had carefully perused it. Perhaps the N. Times will enlighten us. We shall notice briefly the letter of "Sherman, Major-General," as he signs himself quite in the style of the elder Napoleon after the Italian campaign. He brags about the capture of Atlanta; recapitulates the items, prisoners, cannon, etc. Imagine Gen. Lee, after any one of his victories, writing in such a strain. We pass over Sherman's lies in regard to our forces.


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Of Course he lies; what Yankee ever failed to lie with or without provocation? It is a little singular, however, that both Hood and Sherman persist in saying that their aggregate loss was only 1, The vitriol leveled at McClellan, however, is so outsized that it goes beyond mere criticism. Yet loathe him most of us do. More than that, we insist on loathing him. Why might this be? Here the lens of mythology comes into play. That mythologies contain certain recurring archetypes has long been noted by scholars, especially psychologist Carl Jung, whose ideas about mythical archetypes have had enormous influence.

And whether the teller is aware of it or not, effective storytelling always involves mythic archetypes. But when the food comes, it often does not meet his specifications; it is not good enough. Arrogance, childishness, and irresponsibility, they continue, are hallmarks of the High Chair Tyrant—traits that are invariably assigned to McClellan.

Forced to abandon his bid to capture the Confederate capital, McClellan blames not himself but the Lincoln administration. He overestimates their numbers, falls for their deceptions, and exaggerates their prowess. One such forceful personality was Robert E.

A letter from Lincoln to McClellan, written three weeks before the president sacked the general, is redolent of someone trying to cajole a Weakling King. It is all easy if our troops march as well as the enemy, and it is unmanly to say they cannot do it. To say that these archetypes apply to the actual McClellan is simplistic. But they so thoroughly dominate the popular view of McClellan that I doubt they can ever be dislodged. It is likely they will always characterize his image in the American Iliad.

The soliloquy begins as Lincoln awaits word of the outcome of the battle of Antietam. Balanced between hope and melancholy, Lincoln muses over his own life and the mysteries of life in general.

General Grant's Strategies to win the Civil War

It is a passage that contains staggering power and requires little reflection for a reader to realize the life lesson bestowed on us by McClellan. In McClellan we see a man of much promise and many gifts but also the fatal belief that he already possessed every faculty to achieve success. If the lesson of Lincoln is that we must grow or die, the lesson of McClellan is the bitter fate that awaits us if we do not continue to mature.

Otto Eisenschiml and Ralph Newman, eds. Thomas J. Rowland, George B. See also St.

Catalog Record: McClellan, Sherman, and Grant | HathiTrust Digital Library

McClellan to Edwin M. Washington: Government Printing Office, — , Series 1, vol. Harry S.


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Truman, Memoirs by Harry S. Truman, vol. Interestingly, the version of the scene in the novel pp. Did I say McClellan? New York Times, January 6, Peter S. Appleton, , sympathetic to McClellan but more measured in tone. Eckenrode and Bryan Conrad, George B. Harry Williams, review of H. Kenneth P. Boritt, ed. The last is an invaluable survey of the McClellan historiography. Knopf, Ibid, vii, 8. Ibid, Williams consistently misspelled Urbanna, using only a single n. Ibid, 95, The two books in question are John C.

Warren W. Stephen D. Engle, ed. Lee, C.

Catalog Record: McClellan, Sherman, and Grant | HathiTrust Digital Library

At least one historian has tried to have it both ways. Kevin Dougherty with J. This passage is quoted approvingly by James M. Turner Ettlinger, eds. The room itself seems too small for such large personalities. The photographs, drawings and paintings depicting the lives of these two men seem to pulse with a kind of tension that recalls the horrifying 19th-century era when the country was riven, yet united behind their respective generals—Grant in the North and Lee from the South.

But we asked curator Ward if he'd tell us who was the better general, and here is what he sent us. The question has intrigued historians and armchair strategists since the Civil War itself. Lee is usually accounted the superior commander. He scored outrageous victories against the Army of the Potomac up until Gettysburg , fighting against superior numbers and better supplied troops. His victory at Chancellorsville, where he divided his army three times in the face of the enemy while being outnumbered three to one, is a master class in the use of speed and maneuver as a force multiplier.

Lee also had the difficult task of implementing a strategy to win the war that required him to invade the northern states, which he did twice. As such, Lee increasingly was seen as blameless or beyond reproach, which caused his mistakes or errors on the battlefield. But taken on its own terms, Grant was an exceptional general of both theater commands, as in his seige of Vicksburg, and in command of all the Union armies when he came east. He saved the Battle of Shiloh after the Union line was shattered on the first day, reorganizing his forces and counterattacking.

And he was implacable in the final year of the war when he engaged Lee continuously from the Battle of the Wilderness to Appomatox. I think that Grant slightly shades Lee as a commander because in the last year of the War he managed all of the Union armies, including Sherman in the South and Sheridan in the Shenendoah Valley. Grant served in the field, supervising Meade, who was still commander of the Army of the Potomac, but he had his eye on the entirety of the Union campaign. Moreover, Grant recognize the new reality of warfare: that the firepower commanded by each side was making a battle of maneuver, like Chancellorsville, impossible.

On the other hand, Lee beat McClellan. Subscribe or Give a Gift. Sign up. SmartNews History. History Archaeology.